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College During COVID
by Cathy Sandeen, UAA Chancellor |
Dear UAA Community,
The fall 2020 semester will look different than last year’s, but I am excited to begin another year of teaching, learning and innovation. As the new semester approaches, I would like to welcome our faculty who are back on contract today.
This year poses new challenges, but I know UAA is a place where faculty, staff and students are flexible and resilient. Please take a few minutes to review the information below about what campus operations will look like this fall. Visit the UAA information page for more detailed information about College During COVID. Please join me and members of Cabinet on Wednesday, Aug. 12 at 2 p.m. for an information session on this topic.
- Academics: About 80% of fall 2020 classes will take place via alternate delivery with a limited number of face-to-face courses.
- Course sizes: The Municipality of Anchorage recently released Emergency Order EO-15, which limits the number of individuals who can gather in indoor settings to 15.
To meet this requirement, some courses will be separated into groups that will meet
in person on different days.
- Students: Pay close attention to communications from faculty to ensure you are apprised of changes to face-to-face courses.
- Faculty: Route any questions about face-to-face operations through your respective dean and UAA risk management.
- Workplace: Most employees will continue to work remotely.
Keeping UAA safe
- Masks: UAA recently finalized a policy requiring the use of masks and face coverings on campus. Please review the policy to ensure compliance this fall.
- Restricted building access: WOLFcards or keys will be required to access campus buildings. Employees and students
who do not currently have a WOLFcard should obtain one from the University Center
Cashiering Office or the UAA/APU Consortium Library.
- Faculty will be in touch with students about accessing buildings for approved in-person activities. Please review the facilities and building access FAQs for more details.
- Campus cleaning: Public areas, offices, public restrooms and classrooms with approved face-to-face instruction are cleaned and disinfected daily. Facilities and Campus Services is deploying hand sanitizing stations and wipes across campus. Please participate in disinfecting frequently touched surfaces before and after use to help eliminate the virus that causes COVID-19.
- Housing capacity: Housing facilities will operate at 25% capacity, and students will not share spaces
or have roommates.
Two-step testing: Students who are part of the residential community will not participate in face-to-face activities until they have received two negative test results as outlined by On-Campus Living staff, who are communicating directly with incoming residents.
- State of Alaska Health Mandate 10 goes into effect on Tuesday, Aug. 11 and has prompted changes to student testing policies. More information about these changes is available in this update from the UA system office, and UAA On-Campus Living staff will communicate directly with residential students.
- Fall athletic competition: In July, the Great Northwest Athletic Conference (GNAC) CEO Board made the difficult but unanimous decision to suspend fall athletic competition until at least Nov. 30, 2020.
- No volleyball and cross-country competitions: The GNAC and member institutions are exploring the feasibility of moving fall athletic seasons to the spring semester. More information is forthcoming.
The semester ahead is certainly unprecedented. I hope you will join me in my commitment to keep every member of our campus community safe. Together, we are strong and resilient, and we care for one another. Wear your mask, practice social distancing, stay home if you’re sick and be attentive and empathetic to those around you. Let's make the most of the semester ahead.